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Meena Julta is a fictional character and major antagonist of the long-running British soap opera Emmerdale. She appeared as a supporting character in 2020 and currently serves as the main antagonist in 2021.

She is portrayed by Paige Sandhu.

History

Meena Julta first came to Emmerdale in 2020 with the apparent intention of reconciling with her estranged older sister Manpreet. Upon arrival, she encounters Manpreet and meets her husband Rishi Sharma along with his family - including Rishi's son and old business partner Jai Sharma. At first Manpreet dismisses Meena's attempt to make peace with her and even rebuffs her insistence that she is a changed woman, but eventually the pair gradually reform their once broken bond.

In 2021, Meena begins dating local shopkeeper David Metcalfe whilst his father Eric Pollard is away recuperating from the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. David's son Jacob Gallagher initially warms up to Meena, who in the meantime seems to grow jealous of David's past relationships with Jai's sister Priya as well as his two ex-wives Leyla Harding and Tracy Shankley. However, Jacob soon begins to distrust Meena upon growing suspicious of her ulterior motives. Meena seeks to placate Jacob's theories by claiming that she is different from David's previous fiancé Maya Stepney, a previously convicted paedophile who sexually abused Jacob a few years ago. Nethertheless, Jacob's suspicions remain aroused and he later confines to his girlfriend Leanna Cavanagh about his thoughts on Meena.

Eventually, Meena's dark side begins to emerge in Summer 2021. First she targets Princess, a dog that belonged to youngster Millie Tate after her parents Jamie Tate and Andrea along with grandmother Kim Tate allowed her to keep the pet, by deliberately locking her in a car during hot weather; Princess is rushed to hospital, but recovers thanks to local vet Paddy Kirk. At the same time, Meena makes an enemy of Jamie's girlfriend Dawn Taylor in light of the latter's issues with both her father Will and former boyfriend Bill Fletcher. Later on, Meena confines to fellow neighbour Diane Sugden about the death of her best-friend Nadine Butler and how the aftermath has deeply affected her. However, it is later revealed that Meena had actually killed Nadine in unknown circumstances.

Soon enough, Meena's true colors steadily emerge when she attempts to poison Jacob before stealing money at the Emmerdale festival and planning to frame him as the culprit. However, Leanna - who is due to leave the village with her father Liam - comes across Meena's secret and makes a run for it. Meena pursues Leanna and catches up with her at a bridge after the latter hurts her ankle. Cornering Leanna at the bridge, Meena admits to killing Nadine before proceeding to attack Leanna. Despite Leanna's efforts to fight back, Meena ultimately pushes her off the bridge and watches as Leanna falls to her death. As Leanna dies, Meena tauntingly leaves her behind before walking back to the village.

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Trivia

  • At one point, Meena had a previous spousal relationship or marriage with a man called Jeremy.
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